Charles Leclerc has said he "doesn't know why" his Ferrari team chose to put him on a one-stop strategy after the Monagasque driver ended up finishing the United States Grand Prix pointless after disqualification.
However, for Leclerc, it's the third time this season that he has started on pole and not won the race, with more questions over Ferrari's strategy choice inevitable after the Monagasque driver was put on a clearly detrimental one-stop strategy.
Leclerc: 'I don't know why we did it'
The Ferrari star's race at the front got off on the wrong foot when Lando Norris managed to overtake him right at the start before being overtaken by the clearly faster Mercedes of Hamilton and Red Bull of Max Verstappen.
As the race progressed, it became clear that the two-stop strategy would be the optimal choice and all of the drivers around Leclerc opted for that strategy. However, Ferrari decided to leave their man out and he was swallowed up by his rivals.
Near the end of the race, the Monagasque driver was asked to swap positions with his team-mate, who was clearly on a faster strategy and looking to avoid losing any more positions behind him, a move which 'upset' Leclerc.
As it turned out, that particular move was ingenious from Ferrari, as it allowed Sainz to claim just his third podium of the season, after the disqualifications.
“We can’t hide that the one-stop strategy was the wrong choice today," Leclerc told Sky Sports Italia before his sixth-place finish was scratched off.
"I don’t know why we did it, I struggled a lot today. The two-stop approach was the right choice today.
“At the moment, I didn’t know why they asked me to do it [swap with Sainz], so I was upset. After the race, they explained that we needed to protect Carlos from Perez and Russell.
"I’m not angry about this, I’m more disappointed about the strategy.”
Leclerc and Ferrari will be looking to bounce back this weekend as F1 heads across the border for the Mexican Grand Prix.
GPFans is a multi-platform, multi-language brand dedicated to Formula One coverage. We bring you all the ins and outs of the sport, 24/7, everything from up-to-the-minute news and features to the latest viral stories and clips.
We believe that a new generation of exciting, outspoken drivers will make F1 more popular than ever before, and we want to give our users access to as much of their heroes as possible, on and off the track. From Lewis Hamilton to Max Verstappen, Daniel Ricciardo to Sebastian Vettel, we provide in-depth analysis of every every Grand Prix in the season, from Australia to Abu Dhabi.
With Formula One under the new ownership of Liberty Media, how the sport is being covered is evolving, and GPFans will look to be at the heart of this progression into new media, as one of the fastest-growing sites covering the king of motorsports.